Bruce Bond and John Southard, exchange-traded fund (ETF) pioneers and founders of ETF provider PowerShares Capital Management, have acquired Innovator Capital Management, an SEC registered investment advisor and the operator of the Innovator ETF Trust.
Now under the management and ownership of Bond, as Chief Executive Officer, and Southard, as Chief Investment Officer, Innovator will focus on bringing to market ETFs that provide new exposures and strategies that can help investors better control their financial outcomes.
“There has been a tremendous proliferation of ETFs in recent years. And while the ETF market seems content slicing the same factors and exposures ever thinner, today, John and I see an industry ripe for innovation. The ETF is such a capable, benefit-rich vehicle, there is so much more that can be done. There are many investor challenges that have gone unsolved for too long,” says Bond. “Our return to the ETF industry is not a decision we took lightly. It was the result of many months of strategising, planning, and building. The vision, purpose, and product ideas all needed to resonate. It had to be well-orchestrated, or nobody would listen.
“The result is an ETF company we’re excited to share with everyone. With Innovator ETFs, we are kick-starting the engine of invention that gave the ETF industry its reputation for disruption.”
Having founded PowerShares Capital Management in 2006, Bond and Southard sold the ETF manager – by then the fourth largest ETF provider globally by assets – to Invesco in 2006. Named the “Greatest Contributor to the ETF Industry” at the Global ETF Awards three consecutive years, Bond and Southard are credited with introducing the first smart or strategic beta ETF, the first actively-managed ETF, the first ETF of ETFs and the first broad commodities exchange-traded notes (ETNs), amongst many other firsts and industry accomplishments.
John Southard, Innovator Chief Investment Officer, said, “I am thrilled to be part of this new wave of growth in the ETF space. Innovator ETFs is the perfect platform to continue the tradition of innovation we started at PowerShares, and personally, I think we are setup better than ever to deliver exciting products to the investing community, in ways that have never been seen.”
Bond and Southard purchased Innovator and the Innovator ETF Trust to more rapidly bring to market inventive products that challenge industry convention. Additionally, they saw significant value in the existing relationship Innovator had cultivated with Investor’s Business Daily (IBD). Launched in 2015, the Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) is the first ETF under the Innovator ETF Trust. Based on investor William J O’Neil’s CAN SLIM methodology, FFTY is the only investable product that tracks the high conviction list of top-ranked growth companies comprising the IBD 50 Index, which marries fundamental and technical analysis in seeking to select a list of constituents that can regularly outpace the broader stock market.
“Amongst our near-term plans is an expansion of our relationship with IBD that further leverages their powerful rules-based growth- and momentum-oriented investing methodology, which we feel can benefit investor portfolios in novel ways,” says Bond.